Ash trees to be monitored for fungal disease

First published in News by , Chief Reporter

ASH trees in Hampshire are being monitored by the county council following the national fungal threat.

The disease Charlara fraxinea is reported to have killed 90 per cent of Denmark’s ash trees and has been found in a number of locations across England since February.

So far, no signs of the disease have been found in Hampshire, but trees on the highway will continue to be inspected as part of the council’s tree safety inspection programmes.

Council arboriculturists will also be on alert for signs of the disease on any ash trees.

Planting of the common ash tree has been suspended on the council’s landholdings and in any work being carried out, such as planting hedgerows along rights-of-way.

Councillor Mel Kendal, deputy leader and executive member for environment and transport, said: “We are just as concerned about this issue, and its implications for Hampshire, as the Government is for the whole of the country.

“We will work closely with the relevant Government departments, including the Forestry Commission of course, as well as our district council partners, to do whatever we can to minimise the spread of this disease and prevent the loss of ash tree species from Hampshire’s landscape.”

Cllr Kendal also urged people to look out for signs of the disease, and for those with an ash tree within the boundary of their private property to inspect them regularly.

Anyone who identifies signs of the disease in species of ash should report the infected tree to the Forestry Commission by emailing plant.health@forestry.gsi.gov.uk and also notify arb@hants.gov.uk.

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